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April 30, 2012

Russians arrested environmental expert Knuuttila in Russia

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Monday, April 30, 2012

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Russians arrested Finnish environmental expert Seppo Knuuttila in Russia on Wednesday 11. April. He was detained on an official data-collection trip to north-west Russia. Seppo Knuuttila is works for the for the assessment of pollution load into the Baltic Sea at the Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE). In autumn 2011 Knuuttila detected a leak of phosphorus in the Luga river in the volume of 1,000 tonnes annually more than the total annual phosphorus leak in the Baltic Sea from Finland. Seppo Knuuttila was kept without food over one day, interrogated by Russian Federal Security Service and put in jail in an unknown place. He was examinating Luga River phosphorus levels, as agreed. A group of two Finnish and two Russian colleagues took the water samples to measure phosphate levels.

The Ministry for Foreign Affairs (Finland) has filed after Knuuttila arrival in Finland a formal request with Russian authorities for information about the detention of a Finnish environmental researcher. President Sauli Niinistö called for a speedy resolution of the matter. Negotiations are ongoing. Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE) received letter from corresponding Russian organization on April, 24. Ministry for Foreign Affairs (Finland) have not received explanations from Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Russia) as of April, 30.

Kingisepp is near Estonian boarder

Contents

Knuuttila and Massive phosphorus leak

Seppo Knuuttila is a limnologist at the Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE). He works for the for the assessment of pollution load into the Baltic Sea and monitoring of the state of the Gulf of Finland.

According to preliminary Finnish research in autumn 2011 there was a leak of phosfphorus in the Luga river and end up in the Gulf of Finland each year in the volume of 1,000 tonnes annually. According to Helsinki Commission project director Kaj Forsius this emission is more than the total annual phosphorus leak in the Baltic Sea from Finland. The data was published in January 2012. Seppo Knuuttila detected the high levels. Finnish environment officials suspect that runoff from the Fosforit fertiliser plant in Kingisepp part of the concern Eurochem. The gypsum waste piles of the factory may be the source. Russian company have denied the detected levels. Knuuttila considered Fosforit plant as one of the largest single contributors to Baltic Sea eutrophication. Spring is best tome for sampling.

Agreement of closer studies

The agreement of closer studies was made in March 2012 between Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE), The Baltic Marine Environment Protection Commission HELCOM, Russian authorities, fertilizer plant Fosforit in Kingisepp and EuroChem -concern. Funds were from the factory and HELCOM. It was the intension to study the source of phosphorus.

Arrest

In yhe mid April the new sample journay took place. However, the guard of the phosphorus factory EuroChem arrested Knuuttila and prevented him from taking all the water samples as he had inteded to do. Seppo Knuuttila was interrogated for 8 hours in Kingisepp. After releasing he was arrested again in the Russian-Finland boarder and interrogated again for 6 hours. He was obliged to give his computer to the Russian officiers. They took the samples with two Russians. All aimed water samples were not taken. The Russians have the computer.

According to Helsingin Sanomat Knuuttila was several hours in questioning by the Federal Security Service (Russia) the FSB, as well as Russian police and immigration officials. He spent the night in the jail. FSB examined his computer during the night.

Russians

Russians denied in Friday all responsibility of the case. EuroChem accuse Knuuttila for visiting close to factory areas not agreed (5 km). EuroChem gave Knuuttila to Russian immigration officers since he did not carry his passport with him. According to EuroChem the computer included too many photos from the factory surrounding area. According to EuroChem the company is among tightly controlled strategic companies in the Russia. Company claims that the Finnish expert was unsatisfied that the latest studies do not prove the Finnish samples correct. It is not clear which samples, by whom and when the comapny is referring to. Now it was intention to take new samples and it seems that EuroChem prevented at least a part of them.

Environmental issues in Russia

In the Helsingin Sanomat (HS) on April 14 it was pointed out that environmental activists and journalist may face violence in Russia when expressing their concern of the environment. HS mentioned journalists Mikhail Beketov and Oleg Kashin in connection to report the highway plan through the Khimki forest near Moscow and Alexander Senotrusov of the environmental group GreenWorld in Russia.

Syke

The chief director of Finnish Environment Institute SYKE Lea Kauppi consider that the arrest was based on the revealed high phosphorus contents in the area. This received a lot of media attention both in Russia and Finland. Syke will contact the Russians and want the computer back.

Discussion

Commentor include Lea Kauppi, director-general at SYKE, Minister of the Environment Ville Niinistö (Green), President Sauli Niinistö, Hannele Pokka, a former Minister of Justice who is now the Environment Ministry’s Permanent Secretary.

See also

  • Critics of Danish Security and Intelligence Service

Sources

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Former Libyan oil minister drowns

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Monday, April 30, 2012

Libya
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The Danube River.

Former Libyan Oil Minister Shukri Ghanem was found dead April 29 floating in the Danube River in Vienna, Austria. Ghanem, 69, served under Moammar Gadhafi. Ghanem was the Libyan Prime Minister from 2003 to 2006. He later served as the oil minister until he defected to Rome in June of 2011 amid opposition from NATO.

Libya continued to trade oil with Ghanem, one of a select few who came from Gadhafi’s regime.

Prior to his death, Ghanem was working as a consultant for a company in Vienna. He worked to separate himself from Gadhafi’s regime and was opposed to the violence associated with the Libyan old regime.

Ghanem left his home Sunday in everyday attire. His daughter noticed he was missing around 10 a.m. An autopsy report revealed that Ghanem died by drowning. Although officials suspect no foul play, as there was no sign of violence to the body, Vienna police spokesman Roland Hahslinger reported that all options regarding the cause of Ghanem’s drowning are still open.

Toxicology reports have been ordered and results should be available later this week.


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Hand sanitizer consumption amongst teens continues to grow

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Monday, April 30, 2012

Cquote1.svg Teens may ingest hand sanitizer recreationally, one or two swallows could get a child visibly drunk. Cquote2.svg

—Cyrus Rangan

Poison control centers across the US are monitoring a recent increase in the trend of teenagers getting drunk by consuming hand sanitizer. In an effort to educate the public about the trend’s detrimental effects, these centers will be publicizing preventative methods, according to James Mowry, director of Indiana Poison Center.

“We are going to keep a close watch on this trend,” said Mowry. “We will be posting information on our Facebook page so our public will be aware of what could happen.”

An alarming 16 cases have been reported in California since March 1, according to the California Poison Control System (CPCS). This amount raises CPCS’s total to 60 cases reported since 2010.

“CPCS only receives the reported cases,” said Stuart E. Heard, executive director at CPCS. “We suspect there are much more that go unreported.”

Ingesting the product can cause severe internal damage. The US Food and Drug Administration considers hand sanitizer a drug because the active ingredient in the product is alcohol. Low numbers of reported cases will not stop poison control centers from educating the public on the trend’s harmful effects, according to Mowry.

Hand sanitizer contains 62% ethyl alcohol and, when ingested, produces the same effects of consuming a 120-proof alcoholic beverage or 50% more alcohol than hard liquor, according to Mowry. These effects range from dizziness to slurred speech. Ingesting the product can also lead to severe internal damage including alcohol poisoning. Alcohol poisoning symptoms include confusion, vomiting, seizures, slow or irregular breathing, blue-tinged or pale skin, low body temperature, and unconsciousness, according to a report from the American Association of Poison Control Centers.

Hand sanitizer contains 62% ethyl alcohol.

“Teens may ingest hand sanitizer recreationally, and one or two swallows could get a child visibly drunk. The larger the bottle, the greater the potential for poisoning,” said Cyrus Rangan, a medical toxicology consultant at the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and an assistant medical director at CPCS.

Hand Sanitizer Ingredients

Teenagers learn how to extract the alcohol from the product through various sources, like YouTube tutorials. A common method of distilling hand sanitizer involves using salt to isolate the alcohol. Other teens boil the product to separate the ethanol.

“Methods to distill it can be found through friends and the Internet, but straight ingestion of the product without distillation is also common,” said Rangan.

Another concern with this trend is the product’s availability. “Hand sanitizer is readily available,“ said Heard. “Teens can buy it anywhere.”

Officials suggest parents keep hand sanitizer out of children’s sight and reach. Also, purchasing hand sanitizer in foam form instead of gel makes drinking the substance less appealing. However, education is critical. “The main preventative focus should be education,” said Heard. “Teens need to thoroughly understand the effects of consuming large amounts of alcohol in a short amount of time.”



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This text comes from Wikinews. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 licence. For a complete list of contributors for this article, visit the corresponding history entry on Wikinews.

Former Lybian oil minister drowns

From Wikinews, the free news source you can write!
Jump to: navigation, search

Monday, April 30, 2012

Libya
Other stories from Libya
Wikinews Ongoing Coverage of the Libyan Rebellion.svg
…More articles here
Location of Libya

A map showing the location of Libya

To write, edit, start or view other articles on Libya, see the Libya Portal
Flag of Libya

The Danube River.

Former Libyan Oil Minister Shukri Ghanem was found dead April 29 floating in the Danube River in Vienna, Austria. Ghanem, 69, served under Moammar Gadhafi. Ghanem was the Libyan Prime Minister from 2003 to 2006. He later served as the oil minister until he defected to Rome in June of 2011 amid opposition from NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization).

Libya continued to trade oil with Ghanem, one of a select few who came from Gadhafi’s regime.

Prior to his death, Ghanem was working as a consultant for a company in Vienna. He worked to separate himself from Gadhafi’s regime and was opposed to the violence associated with the Libyan old regime.

Ghanem left his home Sunday in everyday attire. His daughter noticed he was missing around 10 a.m. An autopsy report revealed that Ghanem died by drowning. Although officials suspect no foul play, as there was no sign of violence to the body, Vienna police spokesman Roland Hahslinger reported that all options regarding the cause of Ghanem’s drowning are still open.

Toxicology reports have been ordered and results should be available later this week.


Sources

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Australian billionaire announces replica Titanic

Australian billionaire announces replica Titanic

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Monday, April 30, 2012

The original RMS Titanic departing Southampton on April 10, 1912.

Australian billionaire mining magnate Clive Palmer has announced plans to build a fleet of luxury cruise ships, including a replica of the famous RMS Titanic.

Palmer has announced his new company Blue Star Line Pty Ltd has commissioned a close replica of the Titanic from CSC Jinling Shipyard in China. Construction would commence in 2013 and the maiden voyage would be in late 2016.

Palmer said, “It will be every bit as luxurious as the original Titanic but of course it will have state-of-the-art 21st century technology and the latest navigation and safety systems”. When asked if the replica would be unsinkable, Palmer said “Of course it will sink if you put a hole in it. It will be designed as a modern ship with all the technology to ensure that doesn’t happen.”

Palmer also said the Chinese Navy had been invited to escort the ship on its maiden voyage. The original RMS Titanic sank in the North Atlantic Ocean on April 15, 1912 after colliding with an iceberg during her maiden voyage from Southampton to New York, with the loss of 1,514 people.



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Teens drinking hand sanitizer to get drunk

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Monday, April 30, 2012

Germ-X hand sanitizer

Cquote1.svg Teens may ingest hand sanitizer recreationally, one or two swallows could get a child visibly drunk. Cquote2.svg

—Cyrus Rangan

A recent trend of getting drunk by consuming hand sanitizer continues to grow amongst US teens in California. An alarming 16 cases have been reported since March 1, according to the California Poison Control System (CPCS). This staggering amount raises CPCS’s total to 60 cases reported since 2010.

“CPCS only receives the reported cases,” said Stuart E. Heard, executive director at CPCS. “We suspect there are much more that go unreported.”

In response to this recent report, John Cusak and Jimmy Kimmel took shots of Purell on the April 24 taping of Jimmy Kimmel Live to test this new craze. Both Cusak and Kimmel commented on the terrible taste.

“These kids are really determined to get drunk,” Kimmel said. Although Kimmel joked about feeling “cleaner inside,” ingesting the product can cause detrimental internal effects. The US Food and Drug Administration considers hand sanitizer a drug because the active ingredient in the product is alcohol.

Hand sanitizer contains 62% ethyl alcohol and, when ingested, produces the same effects of consuming a 120-proof alcoholic beverage or 50% more alcohol than hard liquor, according to James Mowry, director of Indiana Poison Center. These effects range from dizziness to slurred speech. Ingesting the product can also lead to severe internal damage including alcohol poisoning. Alcohol poisoning symptoms include confusion, vomiting, seizures, slow or irregular breathing, blue-tinged or pale skin, low body temperature, and unconsciousness, according to a report from the American Association of Poison Control Centers.

Hand sanitizer contains 62% ethyl alcohol.

“Teens may ingest hand sanitizer recreationally, and one or two swallows could get a child visibly drunk. The larger the bottle, the greater the potential for poisoning,” said Cyrus Rangan, a medical toxicology consultant at the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and an assistant medical director at CPCS.

Hand Sanitizer Ingredients

Teenagers learn how to extract the alcohol from the product through various sources, like YouTube tutorials. A common method of distilling hand sanitizer involves using salt to isolate the alcohol. Other teens boil the product to separate the ethanol. “Methods to distill it can be found through friends and the Internet, but straight ingestion of the product without distillation is also common,” said Rangan. Another concern with this trend is the product’s availability. “Hand sanitizer is readily available,“ said Heard. “Teens can buy it anywhere.”

The trend is not as apparent across the country in Indiana where just four cases of hand sanitizer abuse have been reported so far in 2012, according to Mowry. “In a 10-year span, 41 cases have been reported,” said Mowry. “Of those cases, 31 were teenagers.” The low number of reported cases does not stop Indiana Poison Center from taking preventative measures to the public. “We are going to keep a close watch on this trend,” said Mowry. “We will be posting information on our Facebook page so our public will be aware of what could happen.”

Officials suggest parents keep hand sanitizer out of children’s sight and reach; however, education is critical. Also, purchasing hand sanitizer in foam form instead of gel makes drinking the substance less appealing. “The main preventative focus should be education,” said Heard. “Teens need to thoroughly understand the effects of consuming large amounts of alcohol in a short amount of time.”



Sources

Wikinews
This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.

This text comes from Wikinews. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 licence. For a complete list of contributors for this article, visit the corresponding history entry on Wikinews.

Study in U.S. finds treatment of type 2 diabetes in youth difficult to control

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Monday, April 30, 2012

This algorithm applies only to the assessment for overweight and obesity and subsequent decisions based on that assessment.

US researchers have found that overweight teens diagnosed with diabetes mellitus type 2, or type 2 diabetes, will face harsh struggles trying to control it in a study released April 29.

A teen with type 2 diabetes was uncommon just 15 years ago. Today, one-third of American youth are found to be overweight or obese.

The study, published in the newest issue of The New England Journal of Medicine, analyzed various methods “to manage blood sugar in overweight and obese teens newly diagnosed with diabetes and found that nearly half of them failed within a few years and one in five suffered serious complications.” Thus, the findings support an increase of national “diabesity,” which is type 2 diabetes produced from obesity.

The study is the first, in depth examination of how to medicate teens with diabetes. The majority of previous studies have solely focused on diabetes in adults. Therefore, nearly all drugs manufactured for diabetes are not approved for youths.

The research included 699 overweight and obese teens with diabetes. The teens were prescribed one of three treatments after they were given metformin, a drug to lower blood sugar. The three groups consisted of only metformin, metformin plus diet and exercise, or metformin plus a second drug, Rosiglitazone, commonly known as Avandia.

The study discovered that after four years, “half the teens in the metformin group failed to maintain blood sugar control.” The teens that took two drugs faired slightly better, and those that took metformin incorporated with a lifestyle changed saw an insignificant difference.

Dr. Mari K. Hopper has collected data over the course of two and a half years at the University of Southern Indiana. Her focus — student obesity, or specifically, the beginning stage, Insulin resistance.

Insulin resistance occurs when the body needs more insulin to keep glucose at a normal level. Eventually, insulin resistance can set the stage for type 2 diabetes and heart disease.

“Insulin resistance is real and it can be quantified and about half of insulin resistance is lifestyle and the other half is genetics,” said Hopper, assistant professor of biology. “If you are insulin resistant, then that condition can be reversed.”

Hopper’s goal is to make students aware of insulin resistance and to choose to maintain a healthy lifestyle before diabetes has the chance to set in.

Hopper analyzes how the college lifestyle affects a student’s overall health. Students begin the study as a subject and are invited to come back as a student researcher. They continue to collect data on the new freshman class and on themselves. There are two cohort groups, fall 2009 and fall 2010.

“I thought when they came in as freshman they would be relatively healthy, and then they would be exposed to the college lifestyle,” Hopper said. “My hypothesis is that these students, after four years, will become more insulin resistant.”

However, Hopper said she is finding that students are beginning college not as healthy as she had anticipated.

“We are already incurring about 30 percent of them being overweight or obese,” Hopper said.

Diet changes, the cost of eating well, stress, not enough sleep and inadequate exercise are all factors contributing to a student’s weight gain in college, she said.

“I really thought that the college years was a critical time in reaching these students in identifying risk factors for their future health so that the behavior could be modified now,” Hopper said.



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French journalists claim Gaddafi promised Sarkozy campaign €50 million

French journalists claim Gaddafi promised Sarkozy campaign €50 million

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Monday, April 30, 2012

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French news website Mediapart has published a document it says shows the late Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi pledged French President Nicolas Sarkozy 50 million (£42 million) to fund his 2007 election campaign.

Sarkozy, who gained power in that election, is now fighting a reelection bid but lagging behind socialist opposition leader Francois Hollande in opinion polls. A run-off election is scheduled for May 6.

Sarkozy and Gaddafi are among the world leaders seen here at the G8 summit in 2009.

Had the deal gone ahead it would have breached French law, which bans political donations of such magnitude. Although the Arabic document, apparently signed by Libya’s then-foreign intelligence head Mussa Kussa, dates to 2006 and does not indicate any cash was actually handed over, some reports claim money was laundered via Panama and Switzerland.

Sarkozy spokeswoman Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet said the claims were “ridiculous” and invented by Hollande supporters. She said Sarkozy’s election finances were vetted at the time. Hollande spokesman Bernard Cazeneuve said Sarkozy must now “explain himself to the French in the face of such serious elements backed up by new documents emanating from the entourage of the Libyan dictator himself.”

It is not the first time such allegations have been made. As France backed an uprising which ultimately toppled Gaddafi, the Libyan ruler’s son Seif al-Islam last year made the same claim. Mediapart in March published allegations from a doctor who used to treat a local arms dealer, who said his patient had organised such a donation. Sarkozy himself said the suggestion was “grotesque”.

The newly-released document states as present Libya’s head of African investment, Bashir Saleh; Sarkozy ally Brice Hortefeux; Libyan intelligence chief Abdullah Senussi; and arms dealer Ziad Takieddine. It is dated October 6, 2006 and discusses an “agreement in principle to support the campaign for the candidate for the presidential elections, Nicolas Sarkozy, for a sum equivalent to €50 million.”

Hortefeux has denied ever meeting Kussa or Saleh.

Mediapart is a respected left-wing investigative website. It is generally viewed as opposing Sarkozy’s right-wing regime. It claims money was laundered via accounts including one in the name of Sarkozy’s political party’s head’s sister, and says governmental briefing notes indicate regular funding trips to and from Libya. Mediapart says its sources are “former senior officials now in hiding.”

When al-Islam first made his claims, he said “Sarkozy must first give back the money he took from Libya to finance his electoral campaign. We funded it and we have all the details and are ready to reveal everything.” Sarkozy was dismissive when interviewed this year on TF1, saying “I am sorry to see you in the role of a spokeswoman for Gaddafi’s son, frankly I’ve known you in better roles… I am sorry that I am being interrogated about declarations of Gaddafi or his son on an important channel like TF1. When one quotes Mr Gaddafi, who is dead, his son, who has blood on his hands, that is a regime of dictators, assassins, whose credibility is zero… frankly, I think we have sunk low enough in the political debate.”

An investigation is already ongoing into Takieddine. Takieddine is accused of illegally financing Edouard Balladur in an unsuccessful presidential bid in 1995. Sarkozy, who was spokesman for that campaign, denies wrongdoing in relation to it. It is suspected Balladur received kickback bribes from Pakistan in a submarine sale. Investigators believe eleven French engineers were killed in a bomb attack orchestrated as Pakistani revenge revenge for bribe non-payment.

Kosciusko-Morizet suggests Hollande’s supporters arranged the new claims to coincide with allegations made by former International Monetary Fund head Dominique Strauss-Kahn. Strauss-Kahn fell from favour after a well-publicised sexual encounter with a hotel maid in the US and last week claimed Sarkozy arranged for allegations to be made in order to prevent Strauss-Kahn running against him for president.

“If he had financed it, I wasn’t very grateful,” Sarkozy said previously about the allegations. France played an active role in Gaddafi’s downfall last year, providing military support to a NATO mission against the Libyan ruler.



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Sharapova defeats Azarenka in Porsche Finale

Sharapova defeats Azarenka in Porsche Finale

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Monday, April 30, 2012

Maria Sharapova

Yesterday, in a re-match of the 2012 Australian Open championship final, Maria Sharapova knocked off top-seeded Victoria Azarenka 6-1, 6-4 to win the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix tournament in Stuttgart, Germany.

The first set lasted only 30 minutes, and Sharapova broke Azarenka’s serve to go ahead 4-3 in the second set and closed it out with an ace.

For Sharapova, who improves to 22-4, it was her first Women’s Tennis Association title of the year and 25th of her career. Azarenka had won the four previous matches against Sharapova. Sharapova said she mainly entered the tournament as a warm up for the French Open, which begins on May 27. Like the French Open, the Porsche Grand Prix tournament uses clay courts as well.

Azarenka falls to 29-2 on the year, and suffered a wrist injury at the start of the second set that limited her playing ability. She will, however, maintain her No. 1 world ranking.

“I am really pleased to win such a tough tournament, against such tough opponents,” said Sharapova, before collecting the white sports car donated by the sponsor. “Victoria could not perform at her best because of her injury.”

Azarenka and Sharapova posted straight-set victories in the semifinals on Saturday. Sharapova’s win came over reigning Wimbledon champion, Petra Kvitova, 6-4, 7-6 (3). Azarenka’s 2012 campaign started with 26 match victories before being defeated by Marion Bartoli last month at the Sony Ericsson Open in Miami, Florida, U.S.

“Obviously I’m not happy I lost in the final, but congratulations to Maria, she did a really good job this week,” Azarenka said. “It was still a good week for me. I was really happy to come to Stuttgart and I hope to do better next year.”

This event marked Radwanska’s fifth loss of the year, all of which have come while playing against Azarenka. Sharapova earned roughly 87,000 (US$115,000) and a brand new white Porsche 911 sports car for this victory.



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Former Lybian oil minister found dead

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Monday, April 30, 2012

Former Libyan Oil Minister Shukri Ghanem was found dead April 29 floating in the Danube Riverin Vienna, Austria. Ghanem, 69, served under Moammar Gadhafi. Ghanem was the Lybian Prime Minister from 2003 to 2006. He later served as the oil minister until he defected to Rome in June of 2011 amid opposition from NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization).

Lybia continued to trade oil with Ghanem, one of a select few who came from Gadhafi’s regime.

Prior to his death, Ghanem was working as a consultant for a company in Vienna. He worked to separate himself from Gadhafi’s regime and was opposed to the violence associated with the Lybian old regime.

Ghanem left his home Sunday in everyday attire. His daughter noticed he was missing around 10 a.m. An autopsy report revealed that Ghanem died by drowning. Although officials suspect no foul play, as there was no sign of violence to the body, Vienna police spokesman Roland Hahslinger reported that all options regarding the cause of Ghanem’s drowning are still open.

Toxicology reports have been ordered and results should be available later this week.


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